Trail Blazers Go Big In DraftExpress Mock Draft 2.0
Johnathon Givony of DraftExpress.com
has released his 2013 Mock Draft 2.0 this morning, and he has the Trail Blazers selecting a big man with the No. 10 pick
Steven Adams (C, 19, 7-0, 255, Pittsburgh, freshman)
... Portland ranked as the fifth-worst defensive team in the NBA last year according to Hoopdata. Adams could bring some of the size, toughness and athleticism the team has lacked inside the paint in recent years, even if he’s likely a couple of years away from developing into a consistent contributor.
Adams averaged 7.2 points, 6.3 rebounds and 2.0 blocks
in 23 minutes per game during his first and only season at Pitt. He shot 57 percent from the field.
I've said it before and I'll say it again: the Trail Blazers, should they use the No. 10 pick, are going to take the best player available. If Neil Olshey and his staff come to the conclusion that Steven Adams is the best player on their board when they make their pick, I'm sure he'll be the player they select. Having said that, there seems to be a whole lot of overlap between Adams and Meyers Leonard, the young, athletic big in need of development who the Trail Blazers selected with the No. 11 pick in the 2012 NBA Draft.
Leonard stayed at Illinois a year longer
than Adams stayed at Pitt, though Leonard was the same age (20) as Adams when he was drafted. Leonard's averages his last season at Illinois of 13.6 points, 8.2 rebounds and 1.9 blocks are very similar to Adams', with both players shooting nearly identical percentages from the field. Both players are listed as 7-footers who weigh in the 245-250 lbs., with DraftExpress describing Adams
as having a "tremendous frame with room to add more muscle" while being "very mobile, (and) capable of playing above the rim." Among this weaknesses, according to DraftExpress
, are a limited offensive game, finishing abilities and fundamentals on defense. And there's word that he's improved his shooting touch
. All of this is very similar to what DraftExpress said about Leonard
during the run up to the 2012 Draft.
So the question is, if Adams is the best player on the board at No. 10, is there enough playing time on this team to develop two young bigs with similar skills and physical attributes? I guess that's one of these bridges you cross when you come to it.